Wednesday, July 22, 2009


&In lieu of new content because my head's all over the place, here is some writing, first posted on 28.05.2009.


title: afterthought
summary: all about ariadne.

You were not the last-born child but you felt like an afterthought. You are not angry anymore because you are a goddess. You had a half-brother with a head like a bull and somehow you felt ugly. You had other siblings too, though you scarcely think of them and all the petty ways in which they annoyed you. There was a time that you took some satisfaction from pretty little Phaedra’s fate. She was always a liar, even when you were children and her crimson cheeks bespoke her guilt. She was the one who spilled the milk or kissed the boys (and made them cry) or took your eldest brother’s car for a ride and wrapped it around a ‘Welcome to Knossos’ roadsign.

Your brothers were not much better, truth be told. They tired of you as quickly as you tired of them and their boy-games and their toys. Androgeus won all the prizes and he was murdered just to wipe that smug look off his face, as he collected another trophy and another underwear model and a holiday for two in Athens. Glaucus was a Lazarus before his time and a regular little honey-trap and he kissed more boys than Phaedra did (when he was not picking fights). Deucalion was not the worst (he might have been the best) and it was no shame in being duped by Odysseus. Catreus was paranoid but not paranoid enough. In his position, you would have slaughtered your own children but perhaps that is the goddess in you speaking. They all thought you ineffective and pretty (in your own way, which was not Phaedra’s way of the short summer dress and plunging necklines). Androgeus pinched your behind once (he was drunk) and said that if it was not illegal and immoral, he would be an Athenian youth, to be comforted by you in the face of certain death. You were not quite sure whether he thought it more immoral to be Athenian or to make advances on his own sister. You cannot judge; you enjoy being a deliberately non-interventionist deity and your mother slept with a bull; sexual indiscretion is a family pastime.

You liked the look of Theseus. Even your father liked the cut of his jib or some sailing parlance that continued to be lost on you, for all the time in the bars by the docks, making polite conversation with sailors and exchanging kisses and numbers (you were never a saint). It helped that you did not love your half-brother and it helped that you wanted to be anywhere but here. You could never quite bring yourself to hitchhike or whore your way off Crete but helping Theseus was no better.

The whole Naxos debacle embarrassed you; you could barely look Dionysus in the face when he pitched up. You said that you had had your fill of heroes and he told you that he was not a hero, he was a god. You asked if Theseus would get what was coming to him and Dionysus laughed, that little cackle of his, and said that he would leave that to his sister-goddesses.

Saturday, May 2, 2009

& today, I'm going to see a little local rugby match in Croke Park. From the looks of it, I'll be in the Leinster section but, obviously, I'll be supporting Munster. Legitimately. I'm legitimately a Munster supporter! I grew up in Cork. I spent Saturdays on muddy sidelines in County Cork cheering on my brother's school team before I quite understood what this game was all about. When I was little, rugby was the Five Nations on the telly and the cream cakes we would eat and I mostly knew that we wanted the guys in green to win. I still want the guys in green to win, though with today's match and the Lions tour this summer, I fancy red is this season's green.

Monday, March 16, 2009

& Following a brief IM chat with my cousin, I decided I should rock on and make a blog post. He asked me about the two pictures I have adorning, respectively, my Gmail Chat profile and my Blogger profile.

i. Ellen Page. Also known as the oscar-nominated actress from Juno. The reason I use a picture of her is because, once upon a time, I was compared to the character in question. Yes, my brother and sister-in-law decided that the pregnant 16 year-old in the movie reminded them of me. I wasn't sure whether to be flattered or insulted until I saw the movie and reckoned I could live with it.

ii. Jennifer Connolly. There's no particular reason why I should choose this woman. She's gorgeous and married to Paul Bettany so perhaps I just want to be her but, mostly, I chose this picture for the expression. I've had a Blogger account for many years and I still have an element of fear about the interwebs which is, perhaps, why I don't have a picture of myself here.

(Gleaned from the Watchdom community/captheck on livejournal.)

& Also discussed this evening was Watchmen. I went to see it last Friday in a Savoy screen packed full of people who had actually read the book. I had not read the book (although I am reading it now). Honestly? I thought the film was brilliant. I'm informed that it stayed true to the spirit of the book and, certainly, from what I've read so far, I can appreciate that. I will leave you now, with an excerpt from our IM conversation, in which I am excitable.

i'm reading the book now but i saw the movie without having read it AND IT IS AWESOME
Cousin: had you read the book?
good to know, i'd heard it was impossible to understand without it
Me: noooo. i followed it, definitely. and jeffrey dean morgan is amazing and when it comes to dr manhattan? i totally would.
just so you know
Cousin: bought the book at xmas but neither of us has read it yet
you like big blue radioactive willies?
Me: have you seen his thighs? but also, he's awesome. he's dr manhattan
Cousin: I look forward to his thighs
i'd better leave you and your over-excitement alone now.

Friday, March 13, 2009

& I'm in Boston, Massachusetts, getting ready to vacate my hotel room and I mostly don't want to leave (not the hotel room, so much as the city; not the city, so much as the country). I mostly don't want to work in this country, either, I must admit. To be a doctor here is to have no other life. I should return to my packing and contemplate when I can next go to New York and be a tourist who thinks the grass must be greener here.

Friday, February 6, 2009

(when you're down and confused)

& I'm listening to INXS again; I swear it's not all I listen to (it's just all I listen to when I manage to blog, evidently). I'm not listening to Jon McLaughlin right now and it's not because I've gone off his music; it's because his music reminds me of New York and I'm having enough issues letting go as it is.

& yes, I was in New York this week, for four and half days, and I'm pining for it. I had a wonderful time with two of my best friends. There was snow and there were museums and there was fantastic food (with a liberal helping of maple syrup when appropriate) and there was Guitar Hero and there was even a Jon McLaughlin gig (which was not helped by a pile of jetlag and fire alarms going off intermittently throughout the evening; my sense of reality had shifted markedly by the time the guy came onstage but fortunately I have photographic evidence thanks to owning the best camera ever).

& in conclusion, I want to go back.

Sunday, January 11, 2009

(baby don't cry)

&I am guilty of listening to a lot of INXS. Sad but true.
&I have a lot of cinema-going to do, of the worthy sort - like The Reader and Revolutionary Road. Also, possibly Bride Wars. Don't judge me. I lead a stressful life and occasionally, I like to go to the cinema and turn off my brain.
&I have a lot of reading to catch up on. I've read the first two books in Naomi Novik's Temeraire series and I love them. I own the next five. Now, where is the time to read them? I know, I know, it's Sunday, the weekend. Why am I not reading instead of messing about online?

Actually. I don't know. I should really step away from the laptop. I can do that. Sure.

Sunday, January 4, 2009

(dionysian-apollonian opposition)

(from 21.06.07)

Apollo has always been a strange one. Sons of Zeus are usually spoiled brats. They trail around after their mortal mothers in the supermarket, dragging their feet and throwing tantrums in the tinned food aisle.

Apollo is worse than most. He has never played fair and even when he doesn’t win, he engineers it so that he doesn’t lose. Instead, his opponents find themselves being parted from something, their pride or their skin or their dignity. Apollo never puts much store in dignity, not even his own, although he is fiercely proud. He drives his poor mother to distraction and his sister too, or he would if she displayed any interest in his ever-expanding collection of bad habits. Artemis lost count long ago, sometime before Hyacinthos turned her brother’s head.

Hyacinthos was one of Apollo’s first bad habits and it played out like a movie scene, gallivanting and laughing and running hand-in-hand through overgrown meadows until the West Wind pulled a face and got stuck on jealousy. Hyacinthos lost his head and so did Apollo and there have been days and weeks when even Dionysos has had to applaud Apollo’s dalliances with raging revenge. Dionysos has never been as unhinged as Apollo can be and he never understands the bad press he gets, just because he likes a tipple of an evening, and the occasional wild orgy.

Dionysos, with all the solemnity that he can muster, will remind his listeners that he, at least, has never turned a girl into a tree because she spurned him. He will call for another round of drinks and try to recall the last time he was spurned by any lover before he reminds himself that it is he who leads others on a merry chase.

Apollo may enjoy the view from his pedestal but Dionysos can still drink him under the table.

Thursday, January 1, 2009

(In Which Persephone Apportions Blame)

(from 07.08.06)

When there is a beautiful boy in their midst, goddesses tend to misbehave.

Adonis was a beautiful boy. Persephone should have known better. She should have read the omens; any child borne of a myrrh tree can only spell trouble (myrrh masks the stench of death and mortals all must die). To be honest, even amongst the gods, there was something a little off about a daughter seducing her father. Someone should have had words with Aphrodite but she fluttered her eyelashes and flaunted her girdle and everyone forgot what they were going to say in a chorus of lovelorn sighs.

Adonis cannot be blamed that Aphrodite never learned; no more can Paris or Hippolytus be blamed for the quirks of the immortal. Aphrodite will blame them all and more, sitting at the near end of the bar with a Cosmopolitan in one hand and a cigarette in the other.

She put Adonis into a chest to keep him safe. Perhaps it seemed like a good idea at the time. In any case, the logic of the love-struck should not be questioned. (It never occurred to her to stick Hephaestus out of sight but, then again, he would never have stood for it.)

It was a very nice chest, she will tell anyone who listens. He didn’t want for anything. Persephone saw to that, she will say breezily, because Persephone was at hand to keep Adonis safe, to treasure him always, to have and to hold him, if Aphrodite would have allowed it. Again, it was Aphrodite’s fault for leaving temptation on the doorstep of another goddess. Persephone was never as cold and unfeeling as she seemed. She has never understood why she could only spend four months of the dreary long year with a boy to whom she had been mother and then lover and all she could rely on were her own charms. No one realises that she is not as unfeeling as she seems.

Adonis would come back to Persephone every eight months with red tulips because he decided they should be her favourite flower; they matched her lips, he said tactfully, and her white cheeks would suffuse with red goddess blood and, of course, she could never stay mad at him. It was not his fault.

Aphrodite brought him to life, Aphrodite brought him to death. Persephone will tell that to all within earshot as she sits at the far end of the bar with a Bloody Mary. That harridan has far too many jealous lovers, she’ll say, and they are no match for Ares’ gun or Ares’ temper. Adonis was too pretty to die, he is to pretty to die but he dies again and again.

It’s Aphrodite’s fault. It always is.

a new year's revolution?

& it is the first of January again. I knew it was coming but it surprised me nonetheless.
&perhaps 2009 will be the year I write more (although that does not necessarily equate to blogging more; I've come to the conclusion that my life is either too dull or too wildly exciting to commit to bloggery).

&watch this space?